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Judge’s Review: 98 Rating - Barrel Aged Brownie Batter Blend #1 by Pontoon Brewing

February, 2020

Barrel Aged Brownie Batter Blend #1

Barrel Aged Brownie Batter Blend #1

Barrel Aged Brownie Batter Blend #1, Pontoon Brewing

We let Barrel Aged Brownie Batter Batch #1 age for 18 months in Heaven Hill bourbon barrels then blended it with Brownie Batter Batch #2 which has been sitting on VSOP Cognac and Heaven Hill Bourbon barrels for 8 months.

Beverage Profile
Served at: 
50º F



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Judges Rating: 
24 / 24
5 / 6
40 / 40
9 / 10
Overall Impression: 
20 / 20

Barrel Aged Brownie Batter Blend #1 by Pontoon Brewing is being evaluated as a Specialty Wood-Aged Beer (Category 33B) from the 2015 BJCP guidelines.  

The aroma begins with moderate vanilla and an absence of the presumed oak barrel notes. Pleasant bourbon in the nose is up front and center but not harsh. Dark roasted malts are secondary to a slight barrel and alcohol character. 

In the appearance section we find an opaque beer that has a foamy, medium brown head that was fizzy and short-lived.   

Wow! Sweet roasted malty goodness is knocking at the door, so let ‘em in!  Big bold flavors of espresso with a touch of cream and plenty of boozy alcohols play well for this beer's intended audience. This flavors continue to evolve, developing into a wondrously complex drinking experience. While the hop flavor and bitterness are absent, the finish is semi-sweet and drying. The aftertaste is delightfully bourbon-like. Sweet chocolate notes are here too, and a roasty malt bitterness gives this beer yet another dimension. Finally, the balance is forwardly malty.

Full-bodied with medium carbonation give it a pleasantly smooth mouthfeel that is needed with the high ABV. The alcohol warmth is high, but on point with the bold flavors.

This is a world-class beer that you should drink a bottle of now and put one away in your beer cellar. I’m curious to know how this beer will age in year 3, 5 or 10? The flavor notes may become more subtle, but the complexity dial will most likely turn up to 11. If you ever wanted to taste time, effort and dedication in a bottle, this is it!